The festive season is beginning: the days are getting shorter, the nights much longer and all we want to do is hide away in a pub with an open fire and mulled wine. But getting into the seasonal spirit doesn’t have to mean visiting Winter Wonderland and eating turkey. We’ve searched high and low to find the best quirky Christmas events in London to get you feeling festive, without the tinsel.
Now in its 10th year, the Pret-a-Portea is celebrating a decade of fashion with its 10 greatest hits theme. The Berkeley’s pastry chef has chosen 10 of his favourite fashion moments from the last decade from an array of distinguished designers, recreating them in biscuit, bakes or fancy form. The tea includes designs from Dolce and Gabbana, Jason Wu, Nicholas Kirkwood, Lanvin and more. Prices start from £52.00 per person.
The Vaults at Waterloo are being taken over by a big top marketplace, The Bizarre Bazaar, where a hand curated selection of artisan traders, artists and makers will be setting up shop, offering a beautiful collection of gifts and treasures.
They’re also putting on a range of events from a party and Sunday lunch to a 12 course Christmas dinner with proceeds going to Child.org.
This month long Nordic extravaganza at the heart of Shoreditch takes place across two candlelit caverns and features a range of Scandi events from a five course banquet of Nordic delicacies such as barbequed reindeer with fermented blackberries and smoked Norwegian beef tartare.
Taking blind tasting to a new extreme, Pitch Black plunges guests into complete darkness to sample a flight of five libations: fizz on arrival, two cocktails, an amuse bouche and two aromatic wines. The night aims to shift the focus on tasting entirely on taste, smell and aroma, without sight, leaving tasters unable to judge a book by its cover!
This month Clerkenwell London is kicking off the festive season with a series of crafting workshops, with some of Britain’s most innovative artisan designers and creators.
Revel in the wonder of the winter season by designing and making decorations with the quirky Cats Brothers, fashion your own seed catapult with forager artisan Geoffrey Fisher, begin the celebrations early with cocktail and piñata making with artist and prop maker Lizzie King or create a unique card with creative polymath Kia Utzon-Frank.
Cockpit Arts is the UK’s only business incubator for craftspeople, housing nearly 170 local artisans and makers. This season they’re opening their doors at their two centres in Holborn and Deptford for visitors to watch the crafters at work and buy their products direct from the maker. With ceramicists, jewellers, textile designers, shoemakers and many more, there will be plenty of opportunity to get beautiful, unique gifts for your loved ones.